500 home run club

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An African American man in a white baseball uniform with "GIANTS" on the chest takes a left-handed baseball swing as a catcher kneels behind him to receive the pitch.
Barry Bonds joined the 500 home run club in 2001 and set a new career home run record of 762 in 2007.

In Major League Baseball (MLB), the 500 home run club is a group of batters who have hit 500 or more regular-season home runs in their careers. On August 11, 1929, Babe Ruth became the first member of the club. Ruth ended his career with 714 home runs, a record which stood from 1935 until Hank Aaron surpassed it in 1974. Aaron's ultimate career total, 755, remained the record until Barry Bonds set the current mark of 762 during the 2007 season. Albert Pujols is the most recent to reach 500 home runs, doing so on April 22, 2014. Twenty-six players are members of the 500 home run club.

Of these 26 players, 14 were right-handed batters, 10 were left-handed, and 2 were switch hitters. The San Francisco Giants are the only franchise to see four players reach the milestone while on their roster: Mel Ott while the team was in New York, Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, and most recently Bonds. Four 500 home run club members—Aaron, Mays, Eddie Murray, and Rafael Palmeiro—are also members of the 3,000 hit club. Sheffield's 500th home run was his first career home run with the New York Mets, the first time that a player's 500th home run was also his first with his franchise. Alex Rodriguez, at 32 years and 8 days, was the youngest player to reach the milestone while Ted Williams, at 41 years and 291 days, was the oldest.

Membership in the 500 home run club is sometimes described as a guarantee of eventual entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame, although some believe the milestone has become less meaningful in recent years. Four currently eligible club members—Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro and Sammy Sosa—have not been elected to the Hall. Bonds and Sosa made their first appearance on the Hall of Fame ballot in 2013; Bonds received only 36.2% and Sosa 12.5% of the total votes, with 75% required for induction. Eligibility requires that a player has "been retired five seasons" or be deceased for at least six months, disqualifying four living players who have been active within the past five seasons. Some believe the milestone has become less important with the large number of new members; 10 players joined the club from 1999 to 2009. Additionally, several of these recent members have had ties to performance-enhancing drugs. Some believe that by not electing McGwire to the Hall the voters were establishing a "referendum" on how they would treat players from the "Steroid Era". On January 8, 2014, Rafael Palmeiro became the first member of the 500 Home Run Club to be removed from the BBWAA Hall of Fame ballot. As the BBWAA announced the selections for the Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2014, Palmeiro appeared on just 4.4% of the ballots. Players must be named on at least of 5.0% of ballots to maintain their eligibility.

Key[edit]

Player Name of the player
HR Career home runs
Date Date of the player's 500th home run
Team The batter's team at the time of his 500th home run
Seasons The seasons this player played in the major leagues
dagger Elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame
double-dagger Denotes player who is still active

Members[edit]

The stats are updated through the 2013 regular season
A man in full baseball attire wears a pinstriped jersey and a hat with overlapping white "N" and "Y". Looking to the left of the camera, he is holding a baseball bat upward.
Babe Ruth was the first player to reach 500 home runs and set a career home run mark of 714 that stood until 1974.
A dark-skinned man in a black baseball jersey and gray pants takes a right handed baseball swing with a crowd in the background, several people wearing red.
Albert Pujols is the most recent player to hit 500 home runs, one of 11 to reach the milestone from 1999 to 2014.
Player HR Date reached 500 HR Team Seasons played Ref(s)
Bonds, BarryBarry Bonds 762 April 17, 2001 San Francisco Giants 1986–2007
Aaron, HankHank Aarondagger 755 July 14, 1968 Atlanta Braves 1954–1976
Ruth, BabeBabe Ruthdagger 714 August 11, 1929 New York Yankees 1914–1935
Mays, WillieWillie Maysdagger 660 September 13, 1965 San Francisco Giants 1951–1952,
1954–1973
Rodriguez, AlexAlex Rodriguezdouble-dagger 654 August 4, 2007 New York Yankees 1994–
Griffey, Jr., KenKen Griffey, Jr. 630 June 20, 2004 Cincinnati Reds 1989–2010
Thome, JimJim Thome 612 September 16, 2007 Cleveland Indians 1991–2012
Sosa, SammySammy Sosa 609 April 4, 2003 Chicago Cubs 1989–2005,
2007
Robinson, FrankFrank Robinsondagger 586 September 13, 1971 Baltimore Orioles 1956–1976
McGwire, MarkMark McGwire 583 August 5, 1999 St. Louis Cardinals 1986–2001
Killebrew, HarmonHarmon Killebrewdagger 573 August 10, 1971 Minnesota Twins 1954–1975
Palmeiro, RafaelRafael Palmeiro 569 May 11, 2003 Texas Rangers 1986–2005
Jackson, ReggieReggie Jacksondagger 563 September 17, 1984 California Angels 1967–1987
Ramirez, MannyManny Ramirez 555 May 31, 2008 Boston Red Sox 1993–2011
Schmidt, MikeMike Schmidtdagger 548 April 18, 1987 Philadelphia Phillies 1972–1989
Mantle, MickeyMickey Mantledagger 536 May 14, 1967 New York Yankees 1951–1968
Foxx, JimmieJimmie Foxxdagger 534 September 24, 1940 Boston Red Sox 1925–1942,
1944–1945
Williams, TedTed Williamsdagger 521 June 17, 1960 Boston Red Sox 1939–1942,
1946–1960
McCovey, WillieWillie McCoveydagger 521 June 30, 1978 San Francisco Giants 1959–1980
Thomas, FrankFrank Thomasdagger 521 June 28, 2007 Toronto Blue Jays 1990–2008
Banks, ErnieErnie Banksdagger 512 May 12, 1970 Chicago Cubs 1953–1971
Mathews, EddieEddie Mathewsdagger 512 July 14, 1967 Houston Astros 1952–1968
Ott, MelMel Ottdagger 511 August 1, 1945 New York Giants 1926–1947
Sheffield, GaryGary Sheffield 509 April 17, 2009 New York Mets 1988–2009
Murray, EddieEddie Murraydagger 504 September 6, 1996 Baltimore Orioles 1977–1997
Pujols, AlbertAlbert Pujolsdouble-dagger 500 April 22, 2014 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2001–

See also[edit]